Expedia and Joe Jonas Partner to Give Travelers a Helping Hand (Literally)
Let’s be honest: traveling is not always a pleasurable experience. In fact, it can be downright stressful, and when you put a global pandemic into the mix, that level of stress is only going to increase. But travel brand Expedia wants to help lower that anxiety, and it has partnered with singer/songwriter/actor Joe Jonas to do so. This week, it launched its Travel Companions Report in collaboration with Jonas, which found that 80% of American adults feel stressed at the idea of booking international trips.
Sixty percent said they needed assistance when booking travel compared to the pre-COVID days. But Expedia and Jonas also have teamed to offer an “actual Helping Hand” to consumers, which is manufactured as a replica of Jonas’ right hand and created to symbolize the support and reassurance Expedia wants to bring to customers.
Two-hundred and fifty replicas of Jonas’ hand were made using a 3-D printer and stereolithography technology, and each one has been individually painted with custom artwork, numbered by hand and signed by Jonas. “It’s going to take time for travelers to adjust to a post-pandemic life and the new norms that this may entail — we want to make sure we are there for them, every step of the way,” said Nisreene Atassi, the senior director and global head of communications for Expedia Brand.
“Providing a helping hand to travelers is our mission, whether it’s a physical hand to hold for added comfort, or the act of arming them with all the information they need to confidently plan their next trip,” Atassi continued. “We’re on a multi-year journey to becoming a travel company that is obsessed with our travelers, understanding their wants and needs. Planning a trip shouldn’t be stressful and by promising our unwavering commitment and support, travelers can focus on getting the most out of their vacations once again.”
“I’ve spent so much of my life on the road — touring the world and playing in virtually every major city,” Jonas said. “Traveling has always been a personal passion for me, but after more than a year spent at home, I am eager to get back out there. I know that travel is better when I have a great companion to explore with — Expedia gets that too. I’m excited to team up with them to help people feel confident about traveling the world again, whenever they’re ready, by lending a helping hand: one that supports travelers at every step of the way.”
Expedia’s Travel Companions Report also found that 57% of Americans have been overwhelmed by the task of planning their next trip and put off actually booking it three or four times. This group estimated that they would need more than 10 hours to plan their trips. In addition, 30% percent of travelers noted the importance of getting help to understand travel restrictions and guidelines, while 29% valued access to information about whether or not a destination requires vaccinations or testing.
Twenty-seven percent also found it important to easily be able to check the policies of bookings, while another 27% said they were looking for inspiration on where to go when it is safe. But 60% of Americans also responded that they were grateful for “helping hands” on their vacations before the pandemic, which were travel companions that advised them on how to create the best trip possible.
Respondents ranked their go-to travel app the highest in terms of the helping hands they missed the most, followed by the drivers, the tour guide, the hotel concierge and the hotel front desk staff. “It’s clear from our Travel Companions Report that people put an immense value on feeling taken care of and supported during their journeys, and there are so many people in the travel industry that contribute to a traveler’s experience,” Atassi said.